Last night's Shindig at The Western was a slightly unusual one, from my point of view, in that the featured poets were, largely, new to me, although I've always enjoyed what I've read from Cathy Grindrod, and Lindsay Waller-Wilkinson's open mic spots at previous Shindigs have always been worth hearing.
I'll certainly seek out more from both after last night's readings. Both were quietly assured and nicely paced, no mean feat when, during Lindsay's set, there were a certain amount of slightly comic interruptions.
After the break, Charlie Jordan was perhaps more obviously polished in her presentation, but none the worse for that, while Joe Coghlan built momentum almost hypnotically from a slightly nervous start. He recited two long poems, and it would be interesting to hear and read a greater variety of his work, but this was a fine introduction to a writer and performer I suspect we'll hear a lot more from.
The open mic spots were of their usual high quality. Rebecca Bird's poem was a highlight for me, as was Caroline Cook's, and Martin Malone read what might be the best football poem I've ever heard, partly because, of course, it was far more than a football poem.